Caprine arthritis-encephalitis virus (CAEV), an ungulate lentivirus, causes a natural infection in goats. The present report demonstrates that in vitro, CAEV infection is associated with apoptosis, characterized by morphological changes such as condensation of chromatin and the appearance of apoptotic bodies. The presence of DNA fragments was documented by the appearance of a DNA 'ladder' in agarose gel electrophoresis, as well as by in situ end-labelling of DNA ends. In addition, flow cytometric analyses revealed the presence of a hypodiploid peak that gradually appeared as virus infection progressed.


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